Page last updated at 14:21 GMT, Thursday, 21 January 2010

Sainsbury's wins Kelso supermarket struggle

Sainsbury's sign
Sainsbury's has been selected as the preferred bidder for the site

Sainsbury's has had its offer accepted for a superstore site at the centre of a long planning battle with Tesco.

Scottish Borders Council has chosen the supermarket giant as preferred bidder for the land at Pinnaclehill in Kelso.

It previously agreed a deal with Tesco in 2008 but Sainsbury's then bought up land around the site which would have been needed for any development.

The site was remarketed and a council meeting decided that Sainsbury's should take forward its plans for the site.

It will now be up to the Scottish government to allow the deal to go ahead.

The council said that for reasons of commercial confidentiality no information could be disclosed on other bidders for the site.

The clear view of most local people was in favour of bringing Sainsbury's to the town and this decision will be warmly welcomed in Kelso
John Lamont MSP

Leader David Parker said: "I am very pleased that the council has been able to make a decision to select a preferred bidder following the conclusion of the most recent marketing exercise.

"The people of Kelso have waited patiently for a very long time for a supermarket.

"I hope that today's decision will be the foundation stone that secures the supermarket with petrol filling station and new employment land for Kelso."

Roxburgh and Berwickshire MSP John Lamont welcomed the decision.

"This situation has been dragging on for far too long and I am glad there finally seems to be a firm decision in favour of Sainsbury's," he said.

"The clear view of most local people was in favour of bringing Sainsbury's to the town and this decision will be warmly welcomed in Kelso.

"In many ways it is a victory for people power as the public left the council in no doubt as to their views."

Early acceptance

Sainsbury's development surveyor Paul Miller said Kelso residents had "loyally supported" its plans for a store which it said would create more than 300 jobs.

"We are now a step closer to delivering what the people of Kelso have been asking for and hope to welcome you in store soon," he said.

"We now look forward to the early acceptance of SBC's decision by Scottish Ministers when it is referred to them, ensuring no further delay in delivering a supermarket at Pinnaclehill. "

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